WASHINGTON (CBS DC) — A new survey from Mexico finds that the country’s residents have increasingly negative views of the economy and leadership, with 44 percent of Mexicans saying they believe life is better in the United States for those who migrated.
The Pew Research Center survey finds that two-thirds of Mexicans from all regions are dissatisfied with the way things are going in the country, with just 30 percent saying they are satisfied. Six-in-ten said the current economic situation in Mexico is bad, with 27 percent reporting it to be “very bad.” Similar negative views are held about the country’s federal government and Congress, with President Enrique Pena Nieto’s “bad influence” rating increasing nine points to 47 percent.
The Pew survey based upon face-to-face interviews among 1,000 Mexican residents finds that more than one-third of Mexicans saying they would move to the U.S. if given the opportunity. Forty-four percent believe life is better north of the border for those who have migrated.
Seventeen percent of Mexicans said they would move to the U.S. if they had the opportunity — without authorization.
However, the survey revealed a declining net rate of migration from Mexico to the U.S. through data showing a 10 percent decline in Mexicans who say they have a friend or family member living in America. In 2007, 42 percent said they knew someone north of the border compared to 32 percent today.
And despite the negative viewpoints held by many Mexicans about the country, half of respondents believe the economy will improve in the next year.
An overwhelming majority of Mexicans in the survey said that crime is the biggest concern to the public, with 79 percent saying crime is a “very big problem.”
But more than half of Mexicans say that Nieto is doing a good job dealing with the country’s education system (55 percent) and fighting organized crime and drug traffickers (53 percent). And 45 percent say the national government is making progress in its campaign against the drug cartels, up from 37 percent last year.